Had he had his way I would have run away from home at 16 and joined the navy. Still, this is a tour of remembering, so we have to do something to remember the Royal Navy.
Portsmouth has the most amazing navy museum. Many old boats including the Mary Rose, which lived at the bottom of the sea for 400 years, are on show at this museum. It seemed a fitting place to visit for dad.
Then to get our rental car. We had to get it right away since they closed at 1400 on a Saturday. Oh boy… another customer service nightmare.
Guys, it is 2015!
Google knows all there is to know about me if I make just one little slip. How can you not know me when I have told you everything 5 times.
Use the systems!
Why are you typing my credit card number into the machine, one finger at a time? I have given it to you often all ready! Heck, Uber scanned it with my phone and it worked.
So much rubbish in the name of security. I can drive a truck through your security and you will miss it!
Finally all the pain is excused by reminding us that the company is French. ahhhh… so that means all is forgiven…. boy!!!
But the car is hired and we drive it right to a car park and make our way to the museum.
Now this is an expensive museum. It is so expensive I let them call me an over 60 and took the discount. We still spent over £60 to get in.
Note to York Minster
This was a value proposition. I do not begrudge one single penny. There was serious value in this day.
We spent about 5 hours here climbing over 2 ships 1 submarine and through the restoration of the Mary Rose.
Dad was a rope expert, he knew knots like nobody I have ever known since. This was the perfect place to remember him seeing all the ropes so neatly coiled and spliced.
I had just made a comment that walking around these ships is like IKEA, (you go the way the intend and do not stray from their path) when a navy spokesperson explained about the packing up of the dining room in time of battle. He explained how the chairs fold and come apart. His comment was “IKEA got nothing on these guys.” So I guess it is true. The Royal Navy is really just an arm of IKEA.
Mary Rose was launched in 1511. She sailed and served for 34 years. Then she sank in the battle of the Solent. Then it gets interesting. She lay on the bottom of the Solent for 437 years till she was found and raised. It will take 35 years to restore her. Today you look at the half hull in a giant enclosed space that allows the wood to dry out at a perfect pace. This is an amazing story.
We saw only these 4 boats in 5 hours and left exhausted but feeling like we got our money’s worth. The ticket if of course valid for a year. If you live within a few hours of Portsmouth a regular trip here would be well worth it. We saw not half of the available exhibits. To drop down here every couple of weeks to see the next bit is really the right way to see it.
I do not complain about the price. I would like for these places to understand the international tourist. I will not be back in the next 12 months. If I do return it will be to see other things not to return here. I do not need a 12 month pass to the museum. I really think international tourism would be well served with a special price for those who will not get back within twelve months.
So that was the ship museum. Add that to the aviation museum and the train museum and we sure have done transport. Fitting really since this trip is about transporting us across the globe.